Exhibition of the week
One of Italy’s greatest contemporary artists receives a beautiful and eye-opening display of his amazing still lifes.
• Estorick Collection, London, until April 30
It also shows
Images of historical heroes and anti-heroes by the artist whose portrayal of Myra Hindley scandalized the 1990s.
• Wellington Arch, London, January 11 to March 19
Glowing modern masterpieces from this visionary sculptor of light.
• David Zwirner, London, January 12 to February 18
Photographs of work and survival in Ivory Coast.
• Gerald Moore Gallery, Eltham, London, January 12-28
The greatest artist to have worked in St Ives, Cornwall, gets a show in a venue of her choice.
• Tate St Ives until 1 May
Image of the week
A woman photographs Banksy’s work on a building destroyed by fighting in Borodyanka near Kiev. The painting is one of seven street murals painted by the British artist in and around the Ukrainian capital in November, whose fate is now widely debated after one of them was stolen – though it was later recovered. Read the full story here.
What have we learned
Glasgow is considering legalizing graffiti walls amid a boom in the city
A British collector has come together to help a Russian art museum in Spain
Museums in the US will be paying attention to the work of female artists this year
The British Museum was in secret talks with Greece over the return of the Parthenon marbles
American artist Dorothy Iannone, whose work focused on intense love, has died at the age of 89
A portrait of Victorian artist Richard Dadd painted while he was a patient of Bethlem will be on display
Japanese architect and “postmodern giant” Arata Isozaki has died
Two leading museums are arguing over a Vermeer painting
A museum in Texas returned a looted sarcophagus to Egypt
Masterpiece of the week
Vase with flowers, 1896, by Paul Gauguin
You wouldn’t necessarily guess that Gauguin painted this still life in Tahiti. After all, the flowers depicted here, such as bougainvillea and hibiscus, began to be imported to Europe as soon as ships began sailing around the world. Such botanical migrations meant that Gauguin’s successor, Henri Rousseau, could paint “jungles” simply from visits to the Jardin des Plantes in Paris. But this is not a scientific study of plants. It’s an image whose intoxicating fragrance you can smell as the intense colors of the flowers melt and shimmer in your mind, mingling with the drugged, golden rim of the mystery of tropical splendour. When Gauguin arrived to stay with Van Gogh in Arles, his friend greeted him with ecstatic images of sunflowers. Gauguin here responds to their brilliance with darker, stranger shades of longing.
• National Gallery, London
Do not forget
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